Speakercraft CS3 Soundbar with Built-In Subwoofer Review

Discussion in 'Loudspeakers' started by admin, Sep 23, 2013.

  1. admin Audioholics Robot Staff Member

    admin
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    The Speakercraft CS3, with its pedestal design, breaks away from the majority of soundbars and joins the ranks of Zvox and a few others in the sparse marketplace. Unlike a more traditional design, where the soundbar sits in front of the TV and a wireless subwoofer fills in the low end, the CS3 is designed for the display to sit on top of it and utilizes the extra cabinet space to fit dual 5.25" "subwoofers" in the enclosure. Overall, we really enjoyed our time with the CS3. The sound was natural, the bass dug surprisingly low (though not as low as a nice stand alone subwoofer would), and surround simulation was above par. Read on for a the full review.
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  2. its phillip Audioholic Ninja

    its phillip
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    If I was to purchase a soundbar, that might be the one for me.
  3. Marshall_Guthrie Audioholics Videographer Extraordinaire

    Marshall_Guthrie
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    I agree. It's basically a great self-powered speaker in a soundbar form factor.
  4. rdv Audiophyte

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    Has the Zvox 580 pedestal soundbar been evaluated by AH? Would appreciate feedback on your impressions on overall sound and dialog clarity. Even better if a comparison to the cs3 were available.
    rdv,
  5. Steve81 Audioholics 5-O

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  6. rdv Audiophyte

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    cs3 and mt2

    I've read many good things about the Speakercraft CS3, not nearly as much about the Proficient MaxTV MT2. They look the same, the attainable specs seem the match up, but the pricing differs. Does anyone know if/what is the difference? If it pertains to sound quality, I'd spring for the extra cost. If it's some advanced feature, it may or may not be one I'd opt for. Would appreciate any insights.
    rdv,
  7. Steve81 Audioholics 5-O

    Steve81
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    I have to say they look pretty much identical. The only spec that seems different is the midrange size (2.5" vs 3") and given how everything else seems to match up, that may just be an error.
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  8. Marshall_Guthrie Audioholics Videographer Extraordinaire

    Marshall_Guthrie
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    It appears that Proficient and Speakercraft were both part of the AVC group as recently as 2012. Judging from web images of the Proficient MaxTV MT2, and having seen the Speakercraft CS3 up close and personal, I'd say they are identical, though different drivers could certainly be used and could have a real effect on the sound. That said, the Proficient MaxTV MT2 is selling for under $250 on amazon right now. Unless there is a big difference in sound quality, if you need this form facter, I call that a steal.
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  9. rdv Audiophyte

    rdv
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    Duh! It's the midrange drivers ... there is none so blind...
    The CS3 goes for $299 at Amazon, and going on the theory that bigger MAY be better in this cse, and that it's the CS3 that got the glowing reviews, paying the extra $50 seems worth it.
    Thanks for the help.
    rdv,
  10. rdv Audiophyte

    rdv
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    And now a word from Speakercraft

    Not to belabor this, but to put an informed end to it, here are my questions to Speakercraft and their response:

    I've read conflicting information regarding the Speakercraft CS3 four midrange speakers: some sites claim 3", some 2 1/2". Which is correct? If 2 1/2" is their size, what (if anything) differentiates the CS3 from it's Proficient MaxTV MT2 brother?

    Other than branding, there is no difference between the SpeakerCraft and Proficient versions. We just measured them to be sure and the driver assembly is 3 inches on both.
    rdv,

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